Woman Says This "Little Trick" Helped Her Find Her Breast Cancer Before It Was Too Late

Only a few weeks ago, Hayley Browning was diagnosed with breast cancer.

In a brave post on Facebook she shares a tip which she says was critical to her finding her lump so early.

‘Most websites tell you to check for lumps in the shower,’ she explains.

But for Hayley, her lump couldn’t be felt while standing.

‘So this is a call out to all women to check for lumps lying down, as well as standing up.

‘I could only feel the lump whilst lying down and it completely disappeared standing up.

She says if she had only checked herself while standing it could have been too late by the time she found her cancer.

‘I want to reach as many people with this message and help find more #LaidBackLumps’

This article was originally published on That’s Life.

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This Is How Functional Mushrooms Can Benefit Your Health

As anyone with a fondue set gathering dust in their kitchen can attest, food fads can be fleeting. Every now and then, though, one crops up that has real staying power. Enter: the functional mushroom.

Just like the regular kind, these ’shrooms are high in protein and fibre, low in kilojoules and packed with vitamins and minerals. But it isn’t only this run-of-the-mill stuff that’s cementing these mushies as one of the hottest wellness trends of 2018. Some varieties have powerful medicinal properties, too, meaning they work hard to not only fill our bellies but also heal our bodies.

“The health benefits of mushrooms have been known about for many years, particularly in Asian countries and herbal medicine,” according to nutritionist Fiona Tuck, author of The Forensic Nutritionist.

These days, dried ’shrooms are making cameos in bottled drinks, teas, snack bars and even powdered supplements to help supercharge smoothies.

“They really are a class of their own,” says Dr Joanna McMillan, dietitian and nutritional scientist. But why? “Particular antioxidants, proteins and carbohydrates in mushrooms have been shown to have anti-cancer effects. They also boost immunity and have an array of vitamins and minerals essential to health.” With that in mind, we’ve served up a few of our faves.

Maitake: weight-loss aid

 

Strengths: Battling the bulge? Maitakes are low in kilojoules and high in fibre, which promotes a feeling of fullness and can help with weight loss. In one study at the Koseikai Clinic in Tokyo, 30 overweight adults were given powdered maitake daily without changing any other aspect of their regular diets. After two months, they’d lost an average of 5–6kg. This was put down to the mushrooms containing ‘D fraction’, a polysaccharide known to lower blood pressure, regulate glucose levels and assist metabolism.

Traits: Earthy, intense and feathery in texture.

Tip: Saute whole with compatible flavours such as rosemary and thyme; caramelised maitakes also work well with chocolate (just trust us).

Enoki: cancer-kicker

Enokis are rich in nutrients called beta glucans. These boost the production of nitric oxide – a key to helping our bodies destroy diseased cells. National University of Singapore researchers found the stalks contain a protein that can help to regulate the immune system and fight off viruses and allergies. Plus, one cup of enoki provides 23 per cent of the recommended daily intake of niacin – one form of this B vitamin, nicotinamide, may reduce melanoma risk, say University of Sydney experts.

Traits: Thin, sprout-like and mild enough to eat raw.

Tip: Sprinkle them over salad for crunch, or stir the powder into juice.

Oyster: heart-healthy

Fungi have long been praised for their cholesterol-lowering abilities, but no variety does it better than the oyster mushroom. Nutritional scientists from Birdem Hospital in Dhaka asked 89 type 2 diabetics
to eat 150g of oyster mushrooms daily. After seven days, a blood test analysis showed the patients had an increased sensitivity to insulin and their levels of low-density lipoproteins (aka the ‘bad’ cholesterol- making enzymes) and triglycerides had reduced.

Traits: Velvety to touch and earthy in taste.

Tip: Fry and mix through any egg-based dishes, or blend and add the pulp to soups or smoothies.

Shiitake: brain-booster

Shiitake mushrooms are packed with the amino acid glutamine, known for its ability to stimulate neural activity and transfer potassium to the brain. Plus, they contain B12, an elusive vitamin that increases focus and is vital to healthy neurological function. In 2008, University of Oxford scientists discovered that study participants who had higher levels of the vitamin were six times less likely to experience brain shrinkage – a symptom commonly linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

Traits: Soft and spongy with a smoky umami flavour.

Tips: Mix the ground stuff through your morning brew, or crisp up and use as a meat substitute (such as vegan bacon).

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The Fitness Guru That Can Bust A Tune: Jarrod Roberts

A quote on the wall in Jazza’s gym Enliven Coaching reads ‘My destiny is to become the best version of me’- and that’s exactly the motto this trainer lives by. 

The 30 year old emphasises the importance of cultivating a positive and supportive environment to train in. “I’ve grown up playing rugby, and sport is all about lifting each other to be the best you can be. I bring that to the gym, so everyone feels supported. We have fun and train hard.”

Jazza takes a smorgasbord approach to training. Think: mash-ups of CrossFit-inspired moves and functional heavy lifting. Boom! His fave workouts for torching fat? HIIT with added weight training. And don’t forget nutrition- “Nourish- don’t punish- yourself,” says the dad of one, who’s also a Body Science ambassador.

“Body love is important not only for your physical health but your mental healthy, too.” 

Train like Jazza

“Women come to me with lower-back problems, so I’d say work on your core.” His fave move? The plank. 

“Find an active community of people, so you can motivate, help and train with each other.”  

Random Intrigue

This guy can carry a tune- he once sang back-up for Joel Madden on The Voice. 

See more of Jazza on his Instagram @jazzaroberts12


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Would You Try These 7 Extreme Celeb Diets? – Women's Health

Who hasn’t heard that a star swears by a certain diet…and then at least entertained the idea of trying it at home? While all of the celeb-endorsed plans below come with caveats (we’ve provided extra info on each via links—def read those before you overhaul your fridge), we’re curious: Which of the below plans are you interested in trying? And which would you never in a million years do?

Hilary Duff told Well + Good that she starts every morning with an apple cider vinegar shot.

Here are the side effects you can expect if you start chugging ACV.

Oprah hearts Weight Watchers so much, she made their relationship official and became their spokesperson.

 

If you want to make like Oprah, check out these foods that are crazy-low in Weight Watchers points.

Beyonce prepped for Coachella by going vegan temporarily (and it’s not the first time she’s cut out dairy and meat to get in shape).

Real talk: Find out what experts say about how to get the nutrients your body needs on a vegan diet. 

Rumour has it that Miley Cyrus has given the Paleo diet a whirl.

Find out what experts say you should know before you try Paleo yourself. 

Gwyneth’s second cookbook is basically an ode to Whole30 (although she doesn’t label it as such).

Interested? Check out this Whole30 survival guide.

Alicia Vikander says the keto diet’s high-fat, low-carb plan helped her get in Tomb Raider shape.

Learn exactly what the keto diet is.

Kim Kardashian says the Atkins diet helped her lose the baby weight after she had North.

This is what her day on a plate looks like.

This article originally appeared on Women’s Health US.

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‘I Committed To 12 Weeks Of Workouts — And It Totally Transformed My Body’

Before I went to university, I was very insecure about how I looked and I never really realised how deeply that affected literally every aspect of my life. I was always second-guessing myself, worrying about what others thought.

But at school, I made friends who were really into fitness, and I started going to the gym sometimes, bolstered by their encouragement.

In my second year, though, I was playing netball when I jarred my back, sending it into spasms. From that moment on, everything was different.

I’d struggle standing for more than 10 minutes. If I went shopping, I’d end up in agony. Even things like getting to the subway and having to stand became too difficult. There were times I’d be sobbing on the floor in pain, with my back muscles in spasms, physically stuck in bed, unable to roll out because the pain was just too much.

When the pain started impacting my studies, I went to see a doctor who took an MRI. He told me I had damage in my spine that might never get better without surgery. Heartbroken and frustrated, I decided to work with a physical therapist first, who gave me exercises to work my core and fix the muscle imbalances and poor posture that was causing my pain.

It did get better, but I was still unhappy with my body and how it functioned.

Eventually, I just hit a wall. I wanted to give up. I’d hit my heaviest weight despite being fairly active, and I was tired of always trying and then quitting workout plans.

Feeling close to defeated, I decided I would give myself one last chance to *really* try.

THE CHANGE

I can pretty much guarantee if you’d asked the girl on the left if she’d ever post a photo on social media with her belly out she would have laughed in your face 🐙 now here I am a gym lover (the fact I haven’t been able to go for 3 whole weeks literally hurts me 🙈) who loves to get so sweaty I have to workout with more bare skin 😅 I feel so much more comfortable in my own skin and that’s gotta be the biggest plus ✅ 3 rounds of BBG mixed with running and LISS. ⬅️ 2015 >95kg. ➡️ 2018 ~78kg. . . . . #bbg #bbggirl #bbguk #bbgsisters #bbgcommunity #bbgprogress #workout #gym #liss #runner #running #weightloss #fatloss #fitness #fitfam #fitspo #fitnessmotivation #fitnessjourney #fattofit #beforeandafter #girlgains #strongnotskinny #selfie #sweat #girlswholift #transformationtuesday #progress #progresspic #kaylaitsines #bodyconfidence

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I came across Kayla Itsines’ BBG program through Instagram. I loved that her page featured transformations from girls of all shapes and sizes. I saw girls whose “before” photos looked like me.

Best of all, the workouts were short and the program was for a set length of time. I decided I would commit to getting through 12 weeks of BBG, hitting every single workout, and give up my guilty pleasures (namely chocolate, sweets, and Diet Coke). If putting in my maximum effort for three months didn’t yield results, well, at least I’d tried.

To my surprise, I actually stayed committed. And, after just a few weeks, I started to see changes.

Day one, I could only manage five half pushups; after four weeks, I could do 10. I was becoming less afraid of running, and my times were getting slightly faster. Physically, my stomach was slimming down slightly.

These changes really gave me the drive to keep going. I finished the 12-week program, looked at my progress pictures, and realised I really had lost fat.

I was so proud. But I was also very aware that if I stopped now I would probably just end up back where I started—and I couldn’t think of anything worse than that.

I kept going with the BBG guide, but started adding netball or runs for 30 minutes a few times a week. Over six months, I dropped from a size 16 to a 12. I ran my first non-stop 5K, then started running 10Ks. I got strong enough to do full pushups.

After a year, I set my sights on developing more strength, so, turning to Instagram again, I signed up for Kelsey Wells’ PWR program.

I started using free weights and challenging myself in a new way. After just a few weeks of strength training, I was lifting heavier and feeling stronger, especially in my upper body.

THE WORKOUTS

For a while, I was doing three of the 4×7 minute BBG circuits each week, in addition to running or playing netball for 30 minutes, three times a week.

Now that I’ve started the PWR strength program, my week consists of three to five days of resistance training, and two to three days of LISS (lower-intensity steady state cardio) and HIIT.

The hardest thing for me is knowing when to actually rest. I’m always grappling with the fear that if I stop being as consistent, I’ll end up back at square one. Feeling like I need to take a rest day sends me into an immediate panic that I’m sliding down that slippery slope back into bad habits. But that’s something I’m working on, because rest is super important.

THE FOOD

Winner winner chicken…lunch? 🤘🏼 best lunch I’ve had all week AND I crept in under 500kcals 🔥 because I’m so busy at the moment I rely on meals I can throw together fairy easily 💃🏼 for me a combo of cooked chicken and veggies out the fridge works perfectly and tastes yummo 🤤 in the post lunch slump now but firing myself up with a Diet Coke ready to crank out some work before jabs (ick 💉) and gym (yay 😅) later 🤓 . . . . #bbg #bbggirl #pwr #bbguk #bbgcommunity #healthyeating #workout #gym #run #runnersofinstagram #running #weightloss #fatloss #fitness #fitfam #fitspo #motivation #fitnessjourney #fattofit #bikinibody #girlgains #strongnotskinny #healthylifestyle #sweat #dedication #healthymeal #bodypositivity #yum #mealprep #salad

A post shared by Charli (@burpees_for_burgers) on

I used to have a very difficult relationship with food. I loved eating unhealthy foods, especially during tough periods in my life. At the same time, I hated myself for indulging because I knew what it was doing to my health.

Now I embrace a balance. I use MyFitnessPal to track my overall calorie intake, but I don’t have things that are off limits since the restriction is mentally too negative for me.

My only real rule is I try and keep my meals fresh and simple (as well as quick to make). The minute things get complicated, I know I’ll be tempted to forget it and break from my plan.

I eat whatever I fancy and just try and stick to my overall calorie goal. I always have at least one dinner a week that I won’t track and having that on the horizon means I don’t mind if things get a little monotonous during the week.

THE PAYOFF

Just over a year after setting my original goal to stick with a program for just 12 weeks, the thing that has surprised me the most is that I’m actually still going, still motivated, and still showing improvement! As my journey has gone on, it’s been less about my weight and more about having confidence day-to-day and staying pain free.

I still focus on working on my core strength and it’s literally changed my life. It took a lot of time and consistency, but with a strong core to support my back, I can now play netball, go shopping, run miles—all without pain.

The confidence I’ve gained is something I would never have been able to imagine. It’s so nice to be able to start feeling more comfortable in my skin, and I think it spills over into all aspects of my life. I feel so much surer of myself. I throw myself into activities I’d have never taken part in a year ago. I am getting so much more out of so many aspects of life that I hadn’t even realized I was missing out on.

Physically, the most surprising discovery from this journey is that I can actually run. I’ve gone from not being able to run a mile without stopping, to running 10K in under an hour.

CHARLI’S NUMBER-ONE TIP

Trust consistency. Consistency is what took me from a cycle of trying and failing to achieve results to being where I am now. Don’t let a little slip throw you off track, take a deep breath, look at the bigger picture, and keep on going!

Follow Charli’s fitness journey @burpees_for_burgers.

If you have a story you’d like to share, email us at [email protected]

This article originally appeared on Women’s Health US

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Monthly News Roundup – June 2018

First Cannabis-Based Drug Epidiolex Approved for Childhood Seizures

In June, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved GW Pharmaceuticals’ Epidiolex (cannabidiol) [CBD], an oral solution for patients two years and older to treat seizures linked with two rare and severe forms of epilepsy — Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome. Epidiolex is the first FDA-approved drug from a marijuana-based substance. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not cause intoxication or a ‘high’. In pivotal studies Epidiolex was shown to be effective in reducing the frequency of seizures when compared with placebo. Common side effects include sleepiness, elevated liver enzymes, and decreased appetite, among others.

Combined Braftovi + Mektovi Cleared for Advanced Melanoma

In the ongoing fight against metastatic melanoma, the FDA has now given the go-ahead to Braftovi (encorafenib) and Mektovi (binimetinib) from Array BioPharma. The oral BRAF/MEK inhibitor combination therapy is used for patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma with a BRAF V600E or V600K mutation. In the COLUMBUS trial, the median progression-free survival was 14.9 months for patients receiving the Braftovi and Mektovi combination, compared to 7.3 months for vemurafenib (Zelboraf) monotherapy. Common side effects include fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, and joint pain.

Zemdri: The Latest Aminoglycoside for Urinary Tract Infections

The FDA has cleared intravenous Zemdri (plazomicin) for adults with complicated urinary tract infections (cUTI), including pyelonephritis (kidney infection), caused by certain Enterobacteriaceae in patients with few options. Zemdri is an aminoglycoside antibacterial. In the phase 3 EPIC cUTI trial, Zemdri was non-inferior to (not worse than) treatment with meropenem for the two primary endpoints. Clinical cure and microbiological eradication at day 5 was 88% for Zemdri compared to 91.4% for meropenem. Common study side effects included decreased kidney function, diarrhea, and blood pressure changes, among others.

Nocdurna is First Under-the-Tongue Tablet for Frequent Nighttime Urination

This month, the FDA approved Ferring’s Nocdurna (desmopressin acetate), a vasopressin analog and the first sublingual (under-the-tongue) tablet for the treatment of nocturia due to nocturnal polyuria in adults who wake up at least two times per night to urinate. The mean baseline voids were 2.9 for women and 3.0 for men. Clinical trials demonstrated an average reduction of nocturnal voids by 52% in women (n=118) and 43% in men (n=102) relative to mean baseline (reduction of 1.5 and 1.3 voids, respectively). Commonly reported side effects included dry mouth, decreased blood sodium, and dizziness.

Olumiant Gains Approval for Moderate-to-Severe Rheumatoid Arthritis

Roughly two-thirds of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients will not reach remission with their first tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitor therapy. Eli Lilly and Incyte have announced the approval of Olumiant (baricitinib), a once-daily oral medicine for adults with moderate-to-severe RA and an inadequate response to TNF inhibitors. Like Xeljanz (tofacitinib), Olumiant is a Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor. Olumiant may be used alone or in combination with methotrexate or other non-biologic DMARDs. In studies, Olumiant had a significant response rate compared to placebo at Week 12 (49% versus 27%, respectively). According to Lilly, the price of Olumiant will be 60% less than the leading TNF inhibitor.

FDA Approves Fulphila, the First Biosimilar to Neulasta

In June, a new biosimilar — Fulphila (pegfilgrastim-jmbd) from Mylan and Biocon — was FDA-approved. Fulphila is a biosimilar to Neulasta (pegfilgrastim) and is used to reduce the duration of febrile neutropenia (fever or other signs of infection with a low white blood cell count) in patients treated with chemotherapy for certain types of cancer. As with other biosimilars, the approval for Fulphila was based on data which showed no clinically meaningful differences between the two products in terms of safety, purity and potency.

Posted: June 2018

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Why Anna Victoria’s ‘Real Booty’ Isn’t What You See On Insta

In a side-by-side photo posted to Instagram on Tuesday, Anna Victoria pulled back the curtain on the social media sorcery that goes into creating an “Instagram booty.”

Noting in the caption that she’d always been insecure about her “small” bottom, she explained that fitness offered her the ability to sculpt and tone her body—including boosting her bum. “BUT,” she added, “there’s only so much muscle you can build on your butt AND you need to flex it to really show it off.”

“A lot of the booty pics you see on Instagram are flexed, pushed out, back arched so much it actually hurts,” she continued. In the photos, Anna is seen with a flatter, resting, IRL booty and also with a pumped-up Instabooty.

Physically forcing the butt muscles upwards and out add to the illusion, as do high-waisted yoga pants, she explained. “There are so many ways to make it look 10x bigger on insta than in real life, and I do it too!! I love posing and admiring the ‘Instagram booty’ but that’s not my real booty. And I’m okay with that.”

While Anna admittedly plays into some of the Instagram filtering, it’s refreshing how honest she is about Instagram posts don’t always reflect reality. In January 2017, she posted a side-by-side of her with taut abs and tummy tucked in, and her sitting on the couch with belly rolls fully out. “Me 1% of the time vs. 99% of the time. And I love both photos equally,” she captioned the shot.

In her most recent post, she granted that haters are always going to hate. “People are always going to have opinions on your body. Do they hurt sometimes? Yes,” she wrote. “But a wise woman once said, ‘You could be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world and there will still be someone who hates peaches.'”

Hear, hear.

This article originally appeared on Women’s Health US.

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7 Daily Habits Sapping Your Energy

Do you feel like a constant infusion of coffee is the only thing getting you through the day, even though you’re logging plenty of shut-eye at night? Lack of sleep isn’t the only thing to blame when it comes to feeling sluggish and tired all the time. See if any of the 7 behaviours below ring a bell—and learn how to change your ways.

You’re addicted to the 24/7 news cycle

Stress: you know it’s an energy killer, but your boss, your to-do list, and your mother-in-law might not be the culprits (well, not entirely). If you’re a Twitter-scroller, a cable news addict, or a rabid headline-watcher, you could be prone to feeling drained, according to research from the University of Montreal. Researchers found women in particular were more susceptible than men to feeling stressed by negative news stories, as well as more likely to remember them. Try limiting your news consumption to once a day, and balance it with a dose of good news (upworthy.com is a good place to start) and see if it makes a difference.

You’re lunching al desko

If taking a proper lunch break is as foreign to you as Vegemite, it’s no wonder you’re feeling less than your best, say researchers at the University of Rochester. They found that spending only 20 minutes outside in nature gave a better energy boost than a workout or spending time socialising. Chained to your desk? Try surrounding your workstation with images of the great outdoors: A University of Michigan study found they pump up feelings of vitality, even more so than walking down a busy urban street.

You’re slouching

Better posture isn’t just important for your back – it affects your brain, too. Several studies, including one from Ohio State University, have shown that sitting slumped leads to more hopeless, helpless, powerless, and negative memories. Meanwhile, sitting up straight or standing has been associated with more positive thoughts. Or try standing up in a Wonder Woman-style “power pose” for two minutes—a Harvard study found this posture not only makes you feel more powerful, it can actually reduce levels of cortisol, the brain’s stress hormone (though maybe try it with your door closed to avoid awkward explanations).

You love an airport novel

Look, we all appreciate Danielle Steel every now and then. But reading literary fiction as opposed to flipping through beach reads makes your brain light up, literally. When researchers at Michigan State University asked people to read Jane Austen in MRI machines, they found that those who read passages closely versus skimming them had more neural activity—specifically, activity usually connected with physical activity and movement. So for extra mental stimulation, save the skimmable beach reads for vacation.

You’re living in a clutter zone

If the piles on your desk are overtaking your office, you could be living in an energy-zapping zone. When clutter starts to creep in, it can make your brain overwhelmed, distracted and unable to focus, say researchers at Princeton’s University Neuroscience Institute. Hello, three o’clock slump. How to keep clutter under control? Try pairing your to-do list with five minutes of clearing, whether it’s your workspace or your pantry.

You’re eating too many – or too few – bananas

Or pumpkin seeds, halibut, Brazil nuts, tuna, and green beans. That’s thanks to those foods’ high magnesium content, a mineral that’s crucial to energy levels. Too little and you’ll struggle with both physical and mental fatigue (magnesium can be depleted by alcohol, birth control pills, and exercise); too much and it can have a muscle-relaxing effect. See your doctor to get your levels checked.

RELATED: Study Reveals That Playing These Sports Will Help You Live Longer

You’re cutting carbs

Low-carb diets might be popular, but they won’t do any favours for your energy levels. Your body and brain need carbs – the right kind – for fuel, according to a study in the journal of the American Dietetic Association. It found low-carb dieters experienced greater fatigue and less motivation to work out than healthy eaters who included carbs in their diet. But think naturally-occurring carbs, like sweet potatoes, whole grains and fruit, rather than processed foods like cereal and bread.

RELATED: How Many Avocados Is It Safe To Eat Per Week?

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Doing This While You Walk Can Help You Lose Weight Faster

More often than not, losing weight takes a ton of time and effort. Which is why we’re all ears when it comes to hacks that help us reach our goals quicker.

Enter, ye’ old faithful chewing gum.

Yeah, we know – it’s not the most nutritious of habits. But researchers from Tokyo’s Waseda University have found it could be the secret to torching extra cals. 

The study, first published in The Journal of Physical Therapy Science, observed a change in heart rate of 46 people – aged between 21 and 69 – when they were given gum to chew while walking at a steady pace. 

The participants were divided into two groups: one was given two different sizes of gum while taking a stroll for 15 minutes at a normal pace. The second also walked for 15 minutes, but instead, they were asked to swallow a powder containing the same ingredients.

Both groups had their resting and average heart rates monitored, as well as the distance they covered and their walking cadence. Researchers also calculated how much energy they expended by comparing their average walking speed and body mass.

Incredibly, the average heart rates of those in the gum group increased “significantly” while walking. This was put down to Cardiac-Locomotor Synchronisation – a mechanism that synchronises the cardiac rhythm and a person’s natural movement rhythm.

“Combining exercise and gum chewing may be an effective way to manage weight,” the researchers concluded.

Permission to blow bubbles, granted.

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'We Care' Survivor Story: Sarah Kelly

By August 2013, Sarah Kelly was at the point of leaving her controlling and violent husband. Then something happened that made it impossible for her to stay.

‘We’d been out on a family boat trip, and, as always, something happened that sparked Alan’s temper,’ Sarah tells New Idea. ‘He punched me in the face. Immediately I was in agony.’

With several witnesses, including Sarah’s five-year-old son, the police were called for the first time in Sarah’s 11-year history as a victim of domestic violence.

‘I’d always coped with it before,’ Sarah admits. ‘The abuse was mainly verbal, with the odd assault. But this was different.’

This time, with his single punch, Alan Williams had ruptured Sarah’s right eyeball, fractured her cheekbone and jaw, and broken a bone in her nose. After 10 days in hospital, Sarah returned home – but she had lost the sight in her right eye forever.

‘I was in extreme pain and I was terrified what Alan would do to me and the kids,’ she remembers. ‘He had been charged with endangering my life, but he was out on bail and I knew he’d be angry.’

Sarah lived in fear for the next 14 months, as she waited for the case to go to court.

‘I was living on high alert, dealing with a permanent disability and two terrified children, but Alan was free to live his life,’ she says. ‘It made me so angry. The court process shouldn’t have taken that long.’

To add insult to injury, Williams’ court date was adjourned six times. 

‘Each time I’d get so stressed about facing him. I’d have to psych myself up and then I’d get a call to say it was cancelled. It made me physically sick.’

Alan James Williams, 42, was finally sentenced to 18 months in jail in January this year, but is eligible for parole in nine months.

‘In comparison, I have a facial deformity, which will haunt me for life,’ says Sarah, 34. ‘I’m glad he’s gone to jail, but I’m so angry with the legal system that put me through hell for so long.

‘It’s extended the impact of the attack, and even now there’s no real relief, as he’ll be out soon and living a normal life, while I will live with a deformity on my face forever.’

New Idea is raising funds for victims of domestic violence to provide them with We Care Packs. We aim to help one woman a day in 2016 – but we need your help to do that.

Please support our campaign and donate at www.wecarepacks.com.au, powered by Donate Planet.

Proceeds will be put towards further packs and as little as $5 can help us deliver this much-needed service for women everywhere.

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